Love, Death, And Divorce Essay

1689 words - 7 pages

Henry David Thoreau famously said that “the mass of men lead lives of quiet desperation. What is called resignation is confirmed desperation.” When we compare and contrast these two stories, “The Story of an Hour” and “Desiree’s Baby,” by Kate Chapin, we learn that this sentiment may be especially true for women. Kate Chapin uses “The Story of an Hour” and “Desiree’s Baby” to bravely explore the social inequalities of women in terms of marriage and divorce. The combination of these two stories point out that despite the presence of love, not all marriages are happy and not all divorces are sad. In “Desiree’s Baby,” Desiree has married for love and wishes to stay married and through no fault of her own, she is forced to divorce. In contrast “The Story of an Hour” is about Louise, who has married out of social obligation and wishes to divorce, but is forced to stay married. Both women are forced to follow paths not of their own choosing and submit to the rules set down by a male dominated society. In spite of society’s tendency to romanticize marriage, many women find marriage to be a limiting burden; for others, marriage may be the only chance at life.
Since time out of mind society has had a long standing tradition of a double standard in its treatment of the gender roles. Men were judged more on their assets. Their business and social connections made up their reputations, and they were treated as individual people regardless of their marriage status. In contrast, the very identity of a woman was dependent on her connection to a man and his social position. For women, marriage and children was the only way to have a happy or meaningful life. It was unthinkable that a woman would not marry. Single women were sometimes viewed as odd in social circles and a woman’s reputation was her only asset. As a result of this double standard, marriage was the only option available to a woman who did not wish to live in poverty on the fringes of society. Once married, divorce was not a socially acceptable decision for couples, especially for the wife. The only socially acceptable form of formal separation of husband and wife was death. That being said, the event of a divorce in the life of a man was undesirable, but not completely devastating to his social standing. However, for women, divorce meant social death. Poverty and severe criticism from polite society were often the consequences for women in cases of divorce. For these reasons, many women stayed in unhappy marriages. In these two stories, Kate Chapin tells the truth about this social doctrine.
“The Story of An Hour” is about Mrs. Louise Mallard, who receives word that her husband Mr. Brently Mallard, has died in an accident. Kate Chapin uses the context of the relationship between Mr. and Mrs. Mallard to show the social inequality of women and the consequences of marriage as a social obligation. Upon receiving word of her husband’s death, Mrs. Mallard immediately breaks down in apparent...

Find Another Essay On Love, Death, and Divorce

Love, Death and Transformation in Ginger Snaps

3022 words - 12 pages Love, Death and Transformation in Ginger Snaps On the surface, Ginger Snaps can be easily dismissed by critics as a typical B-rated teen-turned-werewolf movie. What distinguishes this movie from other horror films, however, is its subversion of the traditional perspective of its genre. The transformation in the film is suffered by Ginger Fitzgerald, a sixteen-year-old girl. This lycanthropy coincides with Ginger's first menstrual period

Love and Death in Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet and Othello

1766 words - 7 pages . They take their own lives because the world around them will not allow them to be together. It would appear that the marriages in these two plays are primarily based on love and should last, but they both end in death because the couples internal pain and sufferings. Throughout history Romeo and Juliet is often portrayed as an ideal of romantic love, but this is not always the way it is seen by contemporary readers. In fact, according to the

Death and Resilient Love: Bradstreet, Adams, and Wheatley

1017 words - 5 pages their writing are trying to cope with the conditions in front of them, the perils of being a woman of their times. The heartbreak of watching their children and grandchildren die in front of them, starvation, the loss of livelihood and the ever evolving definition of having a homeland. For all three women death was a constant companion, as was God and a sense of duty to their ventures in their new lands, mostly though I see a deep kind of resilient love in their bodies of work. It is that resilient love and optimism that makes American writing, American writing.

'Till death us do part' 1 Explain the reasons for the rising divorce rate and identify the groups most at risk from divorce - and why

2114 words - 8 pages 'Till death us do part' - "What exactly is meant by the term 'death'? In early marriages, it referred to the death of a spouse, in more modern terms it can now mean the death of a relationship within a marriage. Values placed upon marriage vows have undertaken different views compared to the past three decades. We now have a more liberal view of marriage and divorce; it is no longer viewed by some as a life long formal contract between

Love and Death: The Murder of Kurt Cobain

1871 words - 7 pages not clear though, I don't think Courtney Love would do it, she relied on Kurt's money to keep her lifestyle, and her band "Hole" could not become as famous. Though she may have flipped out when seeing Kurt write the note, mistaking it, like so many other people, for a note requesting a divorce (it may have been). She may have got distressed, offered Kurt drugs, and then shot him, then possibly leaving the last four lines to try to cover up the tension between them. Though this is just an opinion, it is not set in stone, and as of now, it will remain and unresolved mystery.Works Cited:Wallace, Max, and Ian Halperin. Love and Death. New York, NY: Atria Books, 2004. 22-23.

Love and Death in The Epic of Gilgamesh

809 words - 3 pages Love and Death in The Epic of Gilgamesh Abstract: The most interesting stories invariably are about love and death. These two themes underlie the Epic of Gilgamesh, a mythic tale of the quest for immortality. Gilgamesh, profoundly affected by the death of his friend Enkidu at the hands of the gods, questions the injustice of life. Finding no answer, he of course tries to change—indeed, eliminate—the question by seeking immortality. The

Essay on Death and Love in The Merchant of Venice

1686 words - 7 pages Death and Love in The Merchant of Venice        Everyone loves a martyr. He's that guy who not only suffered but died for his cause, his passion, his love. Bassanio may not be the most worthy cause to die for, but in Act IV of Shakespeare's The Merchant of Venice, Antonio is resigned to do so. In his final words before Shylock is set to extract his pound of flesh, Antonio has abandoned efforts to prevent his punishment and assures Bassanio

Antigone - the role of Death and Love in Antigone

577 words - 2 pages Death and Love in AntigoneDeath and love go hand in hand in Greek tragedies. Antigone loves her brother so much that she risks her life to give him the proper burial he deserves. When Haimon discovers his love, Antigone, dead he becomes so overwrought with grief that he plunges his sword into his own side. When the news of Haimon's death reaches his mother, Eurydice, she breaks down and she too kills herself but by stabbing a dagger into her

Relationships, Love and Death in Graham Greene's Stories

1126 words - 5 pages Greene's notion of life as a moral drama is reflected in his treatment of death and dying in the novels. His main characters usually meet sudden and violent ends, but their aftermaths or deaths are almost always accompanied by hints of hope. Through his treatment of his characters' deaths, he makes known the nature of that great gap he finds between the actuality of life in the world, with its disappointments and limitations, and the

Love and Death in Stephen King's "Pet Sematary"

5937 words - 24 pages , to prepare for the promised next appearance of horrors. But at the end of this story, Louis returns from his rumpus with the wild things to find the monsters occupying his home. This image seems to assert that the horrors of Pet Sematary cannot be set aside; the alternatives are love and death or death alone. When the dead really are gone, and one accepts this, then one goes on, as Norma Crandall says one must with aging; otherwise "you ended up

"Love and Death in the Tales of Poe"--relation between love and death in some of Poe's lesser-known stories

622 words - 2 pages Love and Death in the Tales of Poe Upon hearing the name "Edgar Allan Poe," most people think of macabre tales containing suspense and terror. These are not the only types of stories Poe has written. One of his best-known horror stories "The Fall of the House of Usher" is also a story of love. Love is an important and meaningful element in romantic stories. Throughout his tales, Poe uses the relationship of love between two people not

Similar Essays

Love And Death Essay

1150 words - 5 pages other. Love’s overwhelming feeling often associates with death, in that those in love are so consumed with emotion and the desire to be with their beloved that it can lead to their downfall. Even though the loves of Rivalin and Blancheflor and Tristan and Isolde/Ysolt are similar in ways, they also are different. Both Rivalin and Blancheflor and Tristan and Isolde undergo the torments of love which lead to their demise. Both sets of lovers fall

Love And Death Essay

1405 words - 6 pages Fugitive Pieces is a subtly crafted and beautifully honest novel about love and death, and how the two complement and conflict with each other in a magnificent dance that makes up human life. Jakob, the main character in the first part of the novel, loses his entire family at a very young age. The assumed, but never confirmed, death of his beloved sister haunts him for years. He is so consumed with the loss of the only people he has ever loved

Love And Death In Cocteau's Film Orpheus

914 words - 4 pages Love and Death in Cocteau's Film Orpheus In Jean Cocteau's Orpheus, death is personified through the character of the Princess. The Princess is an extremely powerful figure, although she ultimately succumbs to the power of love. Cocteau uses her actions, clothing, and dialogue to show her as a contradictory mix of being both very powerful, yet still very vulnerable to the power of love. The main tool used by Cocteau to demonstrate this

The Death Of Love And Hatred

301 words - 2 pages When people today think of the Texas Judicial System, we think of the death penalty. Or in some way, the courts either not being fair enough or too fair for one's crime. In Machiavelli's "The Prince", the prince has a thought of committing the pain of death without hesitation. The prince says "And if, as sometimes happens, he finds that he must inflict the penalty of death, he should do it when he has proper justification and evident reason